Laudes Foundation

Laudes Foundation

About Laudes Foundation

Laudes Foundation is a corporate foundation here to transform the fashion industry. They give their partners financial support, expertise and networks so they can make the fashion industry work better for every person it touches. They do so with the belief that despite the vast and complex challenges, they can work together to make fashion a force for good.

Laudes Foundation is a corporate foundation here to transform the fashion industry. They work with change-makers all over the world, giving them financial support, expertise and networks so they can make the fashion industry work better for every person it touches. The foundation collaborates with a variety of stakeholders, including NGOs and industry partners, and work closely with smallholder farmers and garment workers.

In all their work, Laudes Foundation places a specific emphasis on women and girls, as they are disproportionately affected by the issues affecting the industry. Currently, they are concentrating their efforts in five key areas: accelerating sustainable cotton, improving working conditions, eliminating forced and child labour, fostering a transition to circular fashion, and strengthening communities:
• Accelerating sustainable cotton: To increase the market share of sustainable cotton, systems and practises need to fundamentally change. Laudes Foundation supports various sustainable cotton standards, and more specifically on the ground they are tackling the conditions that hold organic cotton back. The foundation works with cotton farmers, helping them to make the switch to organic farming. And they collaborate with brands and industry players so as to collectively address market barriers and accelerate the uptake of more sustainable cotton.
• Improving working conditions: Laudes Foundation believe that people should be put back in the centre of the fashion industry. They do this in two ways. Firstly, they support initiatives that give workers a voice. With a garment industry that employees millions of workers, it is paramount to enable those individual to negotiate for better conditions for themselves. Education, transparency and empowerment will ultimately give workers a chance to fight for fairer wages, to know and defend their own rights, and to advocate for interests in the workplace, as well as in their homes and communities. Secondly, they are working to improve transparency in the apparel supply chain. By making previously hidden or unknown information publicly available, the industry fosters a greater accountability, enabling and incentivising decision makers to act to improve working conditions for garment workers.
• Eradicating forced and child labour: Laudes Foundation is leading an effort to eradicate forced and child labour in the apparel supply chain. Their partnerships focus on tackling the root causes of this highly complex and multi-faceted issue, rather than the symptoms. They do this by strengthening both local structures and driving collective action. At the same time, the foundation supports victims, giving them the help they need to recover and rebuild their lives. We prioritise the needs of women and girls, who are disproportionately impacted by this hidden crime.
• Fostering a transition to circular fashion: It is time to rethink apparel and move towards a new kind of industry. One that uses and reuses safe materials. One that restores and regenerates ecosystems. One that provides dignified work for people making products that are “made to be made again". This is the philosophy of a circular economy. For the fashion industry to become circular, each part of the business model must change. Every actor has a role to play. Laudes Foundation is supporting this transition by nurturing and scaling innovative solutions that can change the way our clothes are made, used, and reused.
• Strengthening communities: Making fashion a force for good doesn't start and end with the supply chain. It extends into the communities where C&A colleagues, customers and garment workers live too. Laudes Foundation is working to building resilient communities in regions where C&A operates, either in retail or sourcing. Together with C&A, they enable employee volunteer programmes to support local charities and they drive employee engagement campaigns to empower women. The foundation also partner with humanitarian organisations to support women and children in emergencies and to help build their resilience to disasters.

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